Archive for the ‘What Works’ Category

Designing out crime

February 1, 2017

This article reports an award to a UK company for developing a process of “infusing thousands of microdots into metal sheets ‘marking’ them with a unique identifying code” intended to reduce theft of roofing and building material. The “secured by design” crime prevention program, started in 1989, uses standards and tests nominated and approved by the police to determine which products and systems receive recognition.

Impact of school police

January 25, 2017

This article discusses the impact of police in schools, emphasizing that roles are often poorly defined with limited evidence on effectiveness. Examples are provided of studies now underway through the federally-funded Comprehensive School Safety Initiative.

2016 Goldstein Award

January 23, 2017

The Herman Goldstein Award is given each year at the POP conference to recognize the best example of problem-oriented policing. The 2016 winner was High Point, North Carolina for its Intimate Partner Violence Intervention (IPVI), a focused deterrence initiative that achieved dramatic reductions in both homicides and recidivism. A published description of the project is available here.

Certainty of detection & DUI

January 10, 2017

According to this new study based on self-reported behavior, increased likelihood of being pulled over or encountering a sobriety checkpoint corresponds to less alcohol-impaired driving, whereas increased penalties do not.

Fork in the road in Minneapolis

December 22, 2016

This article reports an ongoing debate in Minneapolis over whether to invest in more police or social services to tackle violent crime. Some community leaders fear that more police will simply increase low-level arrests, but police say they need the additional staff in order to get beyond just reactive 9-1-1 policing.

Evidence-based policing

November 23, 2016

The logic behind evidence-based practices, meaning practices based on the best available knowledge about effectiveness and what works, has become well accepted throughout government circles, including policing. The basic rationale is explained here, and evidence-based policing societies have been established in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, and Australia & New Zealand.

More questions about PredPol

November 11, 2016

This article raises several questions about the predictive policing software PredPol. Its claim of greater effectiveness than hot spots policing and traditional crime analysis is unproven. Its popularity seems to be due more to excellent marketing and sales than to science.

Domestic violence risk assessment

October 10, 2016

This article describes a project underway in Cleveland aimed at better identifying and protecting high-risk domestic violence victims. An 11-item checklist will be used in two police districts to identify and refer victims to a special multi-disciplinary team; researchers will track the cases and compare results with other parts of the city.

Reinventing American policing

October 5, 2016

This column by two distinguished professors offers seven suggestions for improving American policing based on two main principles: (1) emphasizing crimes prevented over arrests made and (2) recognizing that citizen reaction to how police perform is an independent and important metric in its own right in a democratic society.

Predictive policing

October 4, 2016

This article provides a thorough overview of current predictive policing initiatives, which tend to be either location-focused or offender-focused. So far, evidence of their effectiveness is lacking, and civil liberties concerns remain.